2017 SEASON
Aug 2017 - Dec 2017
2018 SEASON
Jan 2018 - Dec 2018

9 Day Splendours of Japan

Trafalgar Small Group Tour starting in Tokyo and finishing in Osaka

Small Groups Japan Tours Trafalgar Asia Tours
Read 6 reviews and enjoy exclusive savings on Trafalgar's 9 Day Splendours of Japan. Eclectic cities, traditional villages, snow-capped mountains and coastal beauty combine. Discover the splendours of Japan on a journey of discovery, from iconic Tokyo to Kanazawa and Kyoto....read more

Overview

Operator: Trafalgar
Type: Small Group Tour (Premium)
Style: Country Explorer
Duration: 9 Days
From: Tokyo to Osaka
Tour Code: JPNL
Visits: Japan
Our Price From:
$ 5,391
Per Person ($AU)
Save This Month:
$ 300
Per Person ($AU)

Day By Day

1

Arrive Tokyo (3 Nights)

Welcome to Japan. Upon arrival at Tokyo Narita or Haneda International Airport, transfer by airport shuttle service to your centrally located hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception drink and local appetisers. (WR) Stay: New Otani
2

Tokyo Sightseeing

This morning your City Tour begins with an orientation drive. See the Tokyo Skytree, the world's highest free-standing broadcasting tower. Continue to Asakusa and visit the Sensoji Buddhist temple. It is one of Tokyo's most colourful and popular temples and has been rebuilt countless times since it was founded in 628, making it Tokyo's oldest temple site. Visit Nakamise, a shopping street over 200 metres long that stretches from the outer gate to the temple's second interior gate. Next head to the famous Ginza district for a hands-on cooking class. Learn how to make sushi with a Local Specialist and then enjoy your sushi creations for lunch. Later choose to either return to the hotel, remain in Ginza at leisure or take part in an Optional Experience. (BB/L)
3

Tokyo Sightseeing

Today continue your City Tour with a visit to the Edo-Tokyo Museum. This fascinating museum displays artifacts and architecture that tell a tale of Tokyo's history and culture during the Edo period. Next drive to Akihabara which began its evolution into 'Electric Town' post WWII when the area became a black market for radio parts. It now houses numerous electronics shops selling a wide range of computer goods and video games. Enjoy some free time here before heading to the Imperial Palace Plaza, a large park area in the centre of Tokyo from where the two bridges that form the entrance to the inner grounds of the Imperial Palace can be viewed. It is the primary residence of the Emperor of Japan and built on the former site of Edo Castle. Take a stroll around the Imperial Palace East Gardens before returning to your hotel. (BB)
4

Tokyo - Mt. Fuji - Matsumoto - Nagano

After breakfast depart Tokyo for the Five Lakes District, dominated by majestic UNESCO listed Mt. Fuji. At 3,776 metres it is Japan's highest mountain and most recognisable icon. Ascend by road to 2,300 metres at the 5th Station before taking a ride on the Kachikachiyama Ropeway, (both weather permitting) a cable car ride offering spectacular views on a clear day of Mt. Fuji and Lake Kawaguchi. Later drive north to visit Matsumoto Castle, one of the most beautiful and complete original Japanese castles with its unique timber and stone structure. It is also a great Cherry Blossom viewing spot in the springtime. Continue to Nagano for your overnight stay with dinner at the hotel. (BB/D) Stay: Shinshu-Matsushiro Royal
5

Nagano - Takayama - Gokayama - Kanazawa (2 Nights)

This morning travel through the breath-taking Japanese Alps to the beautiful hillside town of Takayama. Located in the Hida Region, the town has retained a traditional touch like few other Japanese cities, especially in its beautifully preserved old town. Begin your walking tour of Takayama, known as 'Little Kyoto', and discover its Edo style streets filled with amazing attractions. Explore the Old Town, stopping en route to sample Japanese sake, a Cultural Insight. Lunch today is a Regional Meal of Japanese Hida beef at a local restaurant. Hida beef (Hida-gyu) is the specific name given to beef from a black-haired Japanese cattle breed, it is known as one of the finest quality varieties of beef. This afternoon take a step back in time during a visit to the peaceful mountain village and UNESCO designated site of Gokayama. See the unique Gassho-zukuri wooden houses; the steeply sloped thatched roofs resemble two hands together in prayer. Visit one of the houses and meet the family. Later observe local artisans making washi paper and try your hand at making your own, a Cultural Insight before continuing on to the historic castle town of Kanazawa. (BB/RM) Stay: Kanazawa Tokyu
6

Kanazawa Sightseeing

This morning discover the secrets of gold leaf painting during a visit with a Local Specialist. The production of gold leaf started in Kanazawa at the end of the 16th century and now 99% of Japan's high quality gold leaf is produced in the area. Next visit the gardens of Kenrokuen, rated as one of the top three most beautiful gardens in Japan and a great place to see Cherry Blossom in the springtime. Take your time to relax and explore the ornate landscapes, temples and ponds. Afterwards take a short walk through the Omicho market to see the local fish catch and enjoy an insiders view of everyday life in a busy coastal town. Later visit the Nagamachi District with its old and beautifully preserved samurai houses. Visit the Nomura house, an elegant samurai mansion with beautiful small gardens belonging to a high-ranked samurai family. (BB)
7

Kanazawa - Kyoto (2 Nights)

This morning leave Kanazawa for Kyoto by Express train. On arrival enjoy a special Be My Guest lunch at a traditional ryokan nestled in the peace and quiet of Mt. Yoshida. The ryokan was built in 1932 by master craftsmen to serve as the second residence of the uncle of the current Japanese Emperor, Akihito. Learn more about local Japanese customs as your hosts welcome you into their beautiful home. Enjoy the pleasures of a truly flavourful and unique dining experience of Kaiseki cuisine, crafted from the very freshest of seasonal delicacies. After lunch visit Kinkakuji Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage site famous for its Golden Pavilion. The Kinkakuji history dates back to 1397, when the villa was purchased by Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu. When Yoshimitsu died, the building was converted into a Zen temple by his son. Later check in to your hotel for a relaxing evening. (BB/BMGD) Stay: Nikko Princess Kyoto
8

Kyoto Sightseeing

This morning visit the Fushimi Inari Shrine and see the tunnel of thousands of bright orange torii gates that snake through the forest up into the mountains. Then head to the Sanjusangen-do Hall, a temple famous for its 1001 statues of Kannon, the goddess of mercy and afterwards enjoy a walking tour of the Gion area. Choose to remain in Gion to explore further or return to the hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow guests for a Farewell Dinner at the Ninja Kyoto restaurant. Venture into the mysterious labyrinth and secret fortress of the Ninjas, the traditional Japanese heroes and enjoy the creative Ninja-style food, a perfect ending to your holiday in Japan. (BB/FD)
9

Depart Kyoto - Osaka

Transfer by airport shuttle service to Kansai International Airport or Osaka Itami Airport for your onward flight. Alternatively, continue to Hiroshima by choosing the 13 day itinerary, Splendours of Japan with Hiroshima. (BB)

Day By Day

1

Arrive Tokyo (2 Nights)

Welcome to Japan. Upon arrival at Tokyo Narita or Haneda International Airport, transfer by airport shuttle service to your centrally located hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception drink and local appetisers. (WR) Stay: New Otani
2

Tokyo Sightseeing

This morning your City Tour begins with a stop in Asakusa and a visit to the Sensoji Buddhist temple. It is one of Tokyo's most colourful and popular temples and has been rebuilt countless times since it was founded in 628, making it Tokyo's oldest temple site. Visit Nakamise, a shopping street over 200 metres long that stretches from the outer gate to the temple's second interior gate. Visit the Tokyo Skytree, the world's highest free-standing broadcasting tower. Later choose to either return to the hotel at leisure or take part in an Optional Experience. (BB)
3

Tokyo - Lake Yamanakako

Start the day by heading to the Imperial Palace Plaza, a large park area in the centre of Tokyo from where the two bridges that form the entrance to the inner grounds of the Imperial Palace can be viewed. It is the primary residence of the Emperor of Japan and built on the former site of Edo Castle. Take a stroll around the Imperial Palace East Gardens before continuing your City Tour with a visit to the Edo-Tokyo Museum. This fascinating museum displays artifacts and architecture that tell a tale of Tokyo's history and culture during the Edo period. Next head to the famous Ginza district for a hands-on cooking class. Learn how to make sushi with a Local Specialist and afterwards enjoy your sushi creations for lunch. Then depart Tokyo for the Five Lakes District, dominated by majestic UNESCO listed Mt. Fuji. At 3,776 metres it is Japan's highest mountain and most recognisable icon. (BB/L/D) Stay: Fuji Marriott Yamanakako
4

Lake Yamanakako - Mt. Fuji - Takayama (2 Nights)

After breakfast visit Oshino Hakkai, a small rural village in the Fuji Five Lakes district; a listed UNESCO World Heritage Site. Oshino Village boasts a beautiful park with 8 natural spring water ponds that are fed by melted snow from Mt. Fuji. The reflections of the sky and landscapes on the clear and pure water provide picturesque scenes which make stunning photographs. Then ascend Mt. Fuji by road to 2,300 metres at the 5th station before taking a ride on the Kachikachiyama Ropeway, (both weather permitting) a cable car ride offering spectacular views on a clear day of Mt. Fuji and Lake Kawaguchiko. Later travel through the breath-taking Japanese Alps to the beautiful hillside town of Takayama before enjoying dinner at the hotel. (BB/D) Stay: Associa Takayama Resort
5

Takayama -Gokayama - Takayama

This morning take a step back in time during a visit to the peaceful mountain village and UNESCO designated site of Gokayama. See the unique Gassho-zukuri wooden houses; the steeply sloped thatched roofs resemble two hands together in prayer. Visit one of the houses and meet the family. Later observe local artisans making washi paper and try your hand at making your own, a Cultural Insight. Lunch today is a Regional Meal of Japanese Hida beef at a local restaurant. Hida beef (Hida-gyu) is the specific name given to beef from a black-haired Japanese cattle breed, it is known as one of the finest quality varieties of beef. This afternoon begin your walking tour in the Edo style streets of the Old Town, shopping en route to sample Japanese sake, a Cultural Insight. (BB/RM)
6

Takayama - Kanazawa

This morning travel to Kanazawa to discover the secrets of gold leaf painting during a visit with a Local Specialist. The production of gold leaf started at the end of the 16th century and now 99% of Japan's high quality gold leaf is produced in the area. Next visit the gardens of Kenrokuen, rated as one of the top three most beautiful gardens in Japan and a great place to see Cherry Blossom in the springtime. Take your time to relax and explore the ornate landscapes, temples and ponds. Afterwards take a short walk through the Omicho market to see the local fish catch and enjoy an insiders view of everyday life in a busy coastal town. Later visit the Nagamachi District with its old and beautifully preserved samurai houses. Visit the Nomura house, an elegant samurai mansion with beautiful small gardens belonging to a high-ranked samurai family. (BB) Stay: Kanazawa Tokyu
7

Kanazawa - Kyoto (2 Nights)

This morning leave Kanazawa for Kyoto by Express train. On arrival enjoy a special Be My Guest lunch at a traditional ryokan nestled in the peace and quiet of Mt. Yoshida. The ryokan was built in 1932 by master craftsmen to serve as the second residence of the uncle of the current Japanese Emperor, Akihito. Learn more about local Japanese customs as your hosts welcome you into their beautiful home. Enjoy the pleasures of a truly flavourful and unique dining experience of Kaiseki cuisine, crafted from the very freshest of seasonal delicacies. After lunch visit Kinkakuji Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site famous for its Golden Pavilion. The Kinkakuji history dates back to 1397, when the villa was purchased by Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu. When Yoshimitsu died, the building was converted into a Zen temple by his son. Later check in to your hotel for a relaxing evening. (BB/BMGD) Stay: Nikko Princess Kyoto
8

Kyoto Sightseeing

This morning visit the Fushimi Inari Shrine and see the tunnel of thousands of bright orange torii gates that snake through the forest up into the mountains. Then head to the Sanjusangen-do Hall, a temple famous for its 1001 statues of Kannon, the goddess of mercy and afterwards enjoy a walking tour of the Gion area. Choose to remain in Gion to explore further or return to the hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow guests for a Farewell Dinner at the Ninja Kyoto restaurant. Venture into the mysterious labyrinth and secret fortress of the Ninjas, the traditional Japanese heroes and enjoy the creative Ninja-style food, a perfect ending to your holiday in Japan. (BB/FD)
9

Depart Kyoto/osaka

Transfer by airport shuttle service to Kansai International Airport or Osaka Itami Airport for your onward flight. Alternatively, continue to Hiroshima by choosing the 13 day itinerary, Splendours of Japan with Hiroshima. (BB)

Trip Inclusions

Insider Experiences with Trafalgar

  • Enjoy Insider moments feeling awestruck by majestic Mt. Fuji as you alight at 2,300 metres. And learning the art of making delicate washi paper with a local family, before trying your hand at this traditional craft for yourself.
  • Be My Guest Lunch at a traditional Japanese ryokan.
  • Cultural Insight Sample Japanese Sake, learn about the production of Japanese washi paper.
  • Local Specialist in Tokyo and Kanazawa.
  • Hidden Treasure Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure.

Sightseeing Highlights

  • City Tour of Tokyo and Kyoto, walking tour of Takayama
  • See the traditional Gassho-zukuri houses in Gokayama and the beautiful gardens of Kenrokuen in Kanazawa
  • View Mt. Fuji
  • Visit the Edo Tokyo Museum and Sensoji Temple in Tokyo, the Kinkakuji Temple, Sanjyusangen-do Hall and Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto

Included Dining

  • 8 buffet breakfasts.
  • 3 dinners.
  • 3 lunches (including Be My Guest).

Touring Inclusions

  • Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing
  • Luxury air-conditioned coach or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
  • Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted
  • Porterage and local charges included
  • Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras
  • An expert Travel Director and separate Driver
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of your guided holiday

Trip Notes

  • Itinerary and inclusions are subject to change
  • Cherry Blossom season varies between different regions of Japan and is dependent on weather conditions, so it can also vary slightly each year. Late March to mid April are the most likely times to experience it, but this is not guaranteed.
  • Prices are for land/cruise only. Flights not included

Trip Inclusions

Insider Experiences with Trafalgar

  • Be My Guest A kaiseki lunch at a traditional Japanese ryokan home near Kyoto where you will learn about local customs
  • Cultural Insight Sample Japanese Sake during a walking tour in the Edo-style streets of Takayama Old Town. Learn how local artisans make Japanese washi paper in the UNESCO village of Gokayama.
  • Local Specialist in Tokyo and Kanazawa.
  • Hidden Treasure Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure.

Sightseeing Highlights

  • City Tour of Tokyo and Kyoto
  • See the traditional Gassho-zukuri houses in Gokayama and the beautiful gardens of Kenrokuen in Kanazawa
  • View Mt. Fuji
  • Visit the Edo Tokyo Museum and Sensoji Temple in Tokyo, Mt. Fuji 5th Station, the Kinkakuji Temple, Sanjusangen-do Hall and Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto

Dining Highlights

  • 8 buffet breakfasts
  • 3 lunches (including Be My Guest)
  • 4 dinners

First Class Travel Highlights

  • Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing
  • Daily breakfast and an average of 50% of evening meals
  • Luxury air-conditioned coach or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
  • Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted
  • Hand-picked Insider Experiences
  • Optional Experiences and free time
  • Porterage and local charges included
  • Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras
  • An expert Travel Director and separate Driver
  • All hotel tips, charges and local taxes
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of your guided holiday

Trip Notes

  • Itinerary and inclusions are subject to change
  • Price is for land, cruise and internal flights as specified. Flights not specified are not included
  • The Imperial Palace East Gardens are closed on Fridays so trips starting in Tokyo on Wednesdays will visit the Hamarikyu Japanese Garden instead.

Operator Details

Region: Asia
Style: Country Explorer
Accommodation: 4-5 Star
Location: Central - Generally
Guided: Tour Host & Local Guides
Transport: Luxury Coach
Age Range: Open (min 5 years)
Flights: Internal Flights Included
Airport Transfers: Included in Price
Gratuities: Customary on Tour
Max Group Size: 26 (Avg. 22)
Free WiFi: No
* Source: Trafalgar for trips in Asia. Some variances may occur on individual tours and information is provided as a guide only. Refer to Trip Inclusions section for more details.

Reviews (6)

Trip reviews from past clients of Global Journeys who have travelled on Splendours of Japan with Trafalgar.
Reviewer

Australia
  “Quick look at Japan”
Trip Date: 12/04/2017
Nine days is a short tour of Japan, especially as the first and last days are travel days. The tour was well organised and well paced with a balance of planned activities and free time - especially in the centres of Tokyo and Kyoto. The guide was helpful and accommodating with good local insight. The hotels were great with an excellent level of service and cleanliness. The tour had a good balance of activities (sushi making, paper making) and visits to temples and sites. The optional activities were mainly dinners and not well attended by the group. As a family of three (15 yr old daughter), it was a great first tour of an interesting and beautiful country - we were lucky enough to be there during cherry blossom time!
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Reviewer

Australia
  “Hassle free & well organised”
Trip Date: 09/04/2017
The best season to visit Japan. The tour director was very friendly, caring & helpful. Clean hotels & bathrooms, and hotels had easy access to shops. Nice to meet some friends during the tour, I will definitely will book my guided tours with Trafalgar. Global Journeys is highly trusted & I'd recommend for the booking of holidays.
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Reviewer

Australia
  “Disappointing Trafalgar Tour”
Trip Date: 26/03/2017
Very happy with Global Journeys, Georgie was very helpful and very patient with our booking. Unfortunately we are very disappointed with Trafalgar itinerary! It started with a nice welcome reception... but then it started to go downhill!
The reason we booked with Trafalgar is that we believed they do the research and put the energy to put together something special ! That's why we paid more to get a better service! Unfortunately Trafalgar was not up to standard this time, so many little things that need a great improvement. Every visit seemed to be rushed. We didn't even have a single tour guide for any cities we went to get an in depth history of the town. Very poor itinerary. It was mainly seeing temples.

While we were there there was sumo fighting and also Geisha dancing on and there was not even a mention of it to see if we wanted to have that as an optional or even a pamphlet to see if we wanted to do that on our own time!
I think the tour leader should have this information in advance and share it with the travelers! They are the ones who need to do the research before hand as they are familiar with seasonal programs! Food experiences were ok , till the end where we went to Ninja restaurant and all the waiters were confused! Which made the last night of being together not as enjoyable! On the other hand we truly enjoyed the company of our group mates, that made us really happy to meet amazing people from all around the world :) and that's what we take from this trip :) looking forward to more bookings with Global Journeys.
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Reviewer

Australia
  “Excellent trip”
Trip Date: 11/12/2016
The trip had an overall excellent itinerary, especially for those who enjoy both the scenery of large cities as well as the countryside of Japan. The booking made through Global Journeys was initially somewhat disjointed when my agent left and was replaced with another. However, once the trip was underway, everything sailed smoothly.
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Reviewer

Australia
  “Relaxing trip”
Trip Date: 20/03/2016
Overall, it was a good experience. We met some interesting people on the trip. Tour director Coco was amazing. She was extremely patient (even when there was a particularly annoying/ difficult co-passenger). The places we visited had a good mix of temples, castles, art, local activity/cuisine etc. We got tired of the castles towards the end of the trip. The cherry blossoms were not in full bloom as expected. The pace of the trip was good. Some of us decided to explore more places outside of the tour times (took local trains, went to Tokyo tower, Shibuya station and Harajuku - not covered in the trip). What was really disappointing was the false information about bullet train journey and another visit to a particular place on day 2. Trafalgar kept the incorrect information in the itinerary for an entire year! There is no point keep misleading information. Most of the meals were catered to, the rest we bought on our own. If you happen to be someone who does not enjoy authentic Japanese food, does not like exploring new foods or plain dislike carbs, I would suggest you pre purchase meals. This is meant to be an overall cultural experience but we had some people on the tour craving western food every day. We were keen to try different foods and tried to soak up the entire experience. Learning basic phrases in Japanese came in very handy.
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2017 SEASON
Aug 2017 - Dec 2017
2018 SEASON
Jan 2018 - Dec 2018

Prices & Dates ($AU)

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Departs Status
20 Aug 2017 $ 5,391 Request Quote
03 Sep 2017 $ 5,581 Request Quote
10 Sep 2017 $ 5,581 Request Quote
17 Sep 2017 $ 5,581 Request Quote
01 Oct 2017 $ 5,695 Request Quote
04 Oct 2017 $ 5,581 Sold Out
08 Oct 2017 $ 5,581 Sold Out
15 Oct 2017 $ 5,695 Request Quote
29 Oct 2017 $ 5,695 Request Quote
05 Nov 2017 $ 5,695 Request Quote
12 Nov 2017 $ 5,695 Request Quote
10 Dec 2017 $ 5,391 Request Quote
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Tour Notes
Trip prices are per person, and reflect applicable discounts. Discounts are subject to availability, exclusive to Global Journeys and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Trip prices are correct at the time of the products going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however are subject to change by Trafalgar. Full terms & conditions are available here.

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